Funding Sustainability

Australia Council provides around $175 million funding to support the arts in Australia

Australia Council provided around $175 million in grant and project funding to artists and arts organisations in 2012-13.[1] Of this, $98.5 million went to MPA companies, $21 million to Key Organisations, $26.8 million to board grants and over $28 million to Council and Government initiatives.

In the 2013-14 Federal Budget, a $75.3 million increase in funding over four years was confirmed for the Australia Council to implement the recommendations made in the Review of the Australia Council.

This funding supported over 1000 individual artists, 168 arts organisations, the creation of almost 9000 new works and the presentation of over 7000 new works. There were over 15 million attendances at Australia Council-supported activities.

The Australia Council’s total funding for 2012–13 included:

  • $8.7 million for international activities by Australian artists and arts organisations
  • $7.9 million for arts and cultural activities with a predominantly Indigenous focus
  • $21.1 million for arts and cultural activities with a predominantly regional focus.

In terms of changes over time, the total value of funding has decreased slightly over time from $177 million in 2009-10 to $175 million in 2012-13 in real terms. However, the number of grants and projects supported has continued to increase.

The amount of funding supporting artists internationally has increased ($8.7 million in 2012-13 from $6.8 million in 2009-10). Around two thirds of the artists supported by the Australia Council in 2012-13 engaged in some type of international activity (63%).


[1] This is approximately 40 percent of the total Federal government spending on the arts, as shown in Figure 64. (The Australia Council is an arms-length body of the Federal government).

Figure 68 - Trends in Australia Council’s funding and performance

2009-102010-112011-122012-13
Total funding in 2012-13 value$ million177.5171.4168.2174.8
Grants and projects#1 8731 8971 9222 021
Organisations funded: Key Organisations in 2012-13 value$ million22.923.121.921.2
Organisations funded: Major Performing arts in 2012-13 value$ million102.4101.099.598.5
Grants to organisations#1 1211 0851 0191 039
Grants to individual artists (funded directly)#752812903982
Grants to individual artists devolved through organisations / companies#14310510837
Countries presented in#58666576
Grants supporting Australian artists internationally in 2012-13 value$ million6.87.58.68.7
Grants supporting Australian artists internationally#362418578620